Firefighter injured in bear attack

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Juneau Lake map

A firefighter working on the Juneau Lake Fire in the Chugach National Forest in Alaska sustained minor injuries in a bear encounter on June 22. The firefighter was transported by a life med helicopter from the remote Juneau Lake site (map) to a hospital in Anchorage, about 42 miles away by air. It would have been much longer if ground transportation had been used.

The firefighter walked from the encounter site to the helicopter and is undergoing standard treatment for animal bites.

Notification of any injury on a wildfire engages emergency response protocols.  The Oregon Interagency Incident Management Team 4 implemented its “incident within an incident” practices to deliver timely aid to the firefighter.

Below is a portion of a report on the Juneau Lake Fire from InciWeb:

An incident management team from Oregon assumed command of the Stetson Creek and Juneau Lake fires on June 19, 2015. The Oregon Interagency Incident Management Team 4 (ORIIMT4), Brian Goff, incident commander, and a team of nine are stationed in Cooper Landing.

Firefighters assisting with suppression efforts include the Alaska Midnight Sun Hotshots and three Type 2 crews from National Forests in Montana: the Lolo, Bitterroot, and Beaverhead/Deer Lodge.

Thanks and a tip of the hat go out to Chris.

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Author: Bill Gabbert

After working full time in wildland fire for 33 years, he continues to learn, and strives to be a Student of Fire.